|37000 Feet||Browse and search NASA's
Aviation Safety Reporting System
|Local Time Of Day||1801 To 2400|
|Locale Reference||airport : nc33|
|Altitude||msl bound lower : 2800|
msl bound upper : 2800
|Controlling Facilities||tower : cid|
|Operator||general aviation : personal|
|Make Model Name||Any Unknown or Unlisted Aircraft Manufacturer|
|Operating Under FAR Part||Part 91|
|Flight Phase||cruise other|
|Function||flight crew : single pilot|
|Qualification||other other : other|
pilot : private
|Experience||flight time last 90 days : 61|
flight time total : 244
flight time type : 10
|Affiliation||government : faa|
|Function||other personnel other|
|Qualification||other other : other|
|Anomaly||other anomaly other|
|Independent Detector||other flight crewa|
|Consequence||faa : assigned or threatened penalties|
faa : investigated
|Primary Problem||Flight Crew Human Performance|
|Air Traffic Incident||Pilot Deviation|
I was flying an airplane using GPS from 7a1, donaldson, GA, to ritter airpark (private) approximately 5 mi southwest of asheville, nc. I flew to a waypoint keyed into the GPS. The waypoint coordinates keyed in were 35 degrees 18.6 mins north by 82 degrees 37.7 mins west. Then I turned and followed the GPS track going from the waypoint directly to asheville airport, a line between these 2 points crosses directly over top of ritter airport (my intended destination) 4.6 statute mi out from asheville, right on the edge of the class C airspace. When I got to what should have been 'ritter' per distance from asheville and line between the 2 points, I could not find ritter airpark. Circling around and searching accomplished nothing for me. I was at the supposed location exactly on time per flight plan. I circled for 15 mins. Not finding the airpark and running close to flight service 'begin search' time and with only 45 mins of fuel left, I made a precautionary landing in a cornfield to call flight service and get directions to 'ritter.' ritter turned out to be approximately 1 1/2 mi northeast from where I had been circling. Why? I used a current atlanta sectional. Callback conversation with reporter revealed the following information: reporter stated that he learned that he could not rely on using coordinates for GPS navigation from measuring the sectional chart since the chart was not designed for that type of accuracy. However, if the reporter had used the published coordinates of the nearby airport and taken a distant from that it may have been more accurate. The reporter also stated that the private airport was usually hard to see since it was a grass strip. He said that he was reexamined by the FAA, given a letter of record of this incident for his airman certificate file since he did do damage to the aircraft during takeoff from the cornfield. The experimental aircraft flown was a breeze that resembles the wright brothers' aircraft.
Original NASA ASRS Text
Title: PVT PLT OF A SMA SEL EXPERIMENTAL ACFT MADE AN UNPLANNED FORCED LNDG IN A CORNFIELD AFTER HE COULD NOT LOCATE THE PVT ARPT TO WHICH HE WAS FLYING.
Narrative: I WAS FLYING AN AIRPLANE USING GPS FROM 7A1, DONALDSON, GA, TO RITTER AIRPARK (PVT) APPROX 5 MI SW OF ASHEVILLE, NC. I FLEW TO A WAYPOINT KEYED INTO THE GPS. THE WAYPOINT COORDINATES KEYED IN WERE 35 DEGS 18.6 MINS N BY 82 DEGS 37.7 MINS W. THEN I TURNED AND FOLLOWED THE GPS TRACK GOING FROM THE WAYPOINT DIRECTLY TO ASHEVILLE ARPT, A LINE BTWN THESE 2 POINTS CROSSES DIRECTLY OVER TOP OF RITTER ARPT (MY INTENDED DEST) 4.6 STATUTE MI OUT FROM ASHEVILLE, RIGHT ON THE EDGE OF THE CLASS C AIRSPACE. WHEN I GOT TO WHAT SHOULD HAVE BEEN 'RITTER' PER DISTANCE FROM ASHEVILLE AND LINE BTWN THE 2 POINTS, I COULD NOT FIND RITTER AIRPARK. CIRCLING AROUND AND SEARCHING ACCOMPLISHED NOTHING FOR ME. I WAS AT THE SUPPOSED LOCATION EXACTLY ON TIME PER FLT PLAN. I CIRCLED FOR 15 MINS. NOT FINDING THE AIRPARK AND RUNNING CLOSE TO FLT SVC 'BEGIN SEARCH' TIME AND WITH ONLY 45 MINS OF FUEL LEFT, I MADE A PRECAUTIONARY LNDG IN A CORNFIELD TO CALL FLT SVC AND GET DIRECTIONS TO 'RITTER.' RITTER TURNED OUT TO BE APPROX 1 1/2 MI NE FROM WHERE I HAD BEEN CIRCLING. WHY? I USED A CURRENT ATLANTA SECTIONAL. CALLBACK CONVERSATION WITH RPTR REVEALED THE FOLLOWING INFO: RPTR STATED THAT HE LEARNED THAT HE COULD NOT RELY ON USING COORDINATES FOR GPS NAV FROM MEASURING THE SECTIONAL CHART SINCE THE CHART WAS NOT DESIGNED FOR THAT TYPE OF ACCURACY. HOWEVER, IF THE RPTR HAD USED THE PUBLISHED COORDINATES OF THE NEARBY ARPT AND TAKEN A DISTANT FROM THAT IT MAY HAVE BEEN MORE ACCURATE. THE RPTR ALSO STATED THAT THE PVT ARPT WAS USUALLY HARD TO SEE SINCE IT WAS A GRASS STRIP. HE SAID THAT HE WAS REEXAMINED BY THE FAA, GIVEN A LETTER OF RECORD OF THIS INCIDENT FOR HIS AIRMAN CERTIFICATE FILE SINCE HE DID DO DAMAGE TO THE ACFT DURING TKOF FROM THE CORNFIELD. THE EXPERIMENTAL ACFT FLOWN WAS A BREEZE THAT RESEMBLES THE WRIGHT BROTHERS' ACFT.
Data retrieved from NASA's ASRS site as of July 2007 and automatically converted to unabbreviated mixed upper/lowercase text. This report is for informational purposes with no guarantee of accuracy. See NASA's ASRS site for official report.